Laugher, 27, was keen to honor her memory and he did just that as he scored a hat-trick of 1m springboard titles at the Commonwealth Games and won his sixth gold overall
” src=”https://www.nationalworld.com/webimg/QVNIMTI2NjMwODA2.jpg?width=640&quality=65&smart&enable=upscale” srcset=”https://www.nationalworld.com/webimg/QVNIMTI2NjMwODA2.jpg?quality=65&smart&width =320 320w, https://www.nationalworld.com/webimg/QVNIMTI2NjMwODA2.jpg?quality=65&smart&width=640 640w, https://www.nationalworld.com/webimg/QVNIMTI2NjMwODA2.jpg?quality=65&smart&width=990 990w” data-hero=”” fetchpriority=”high”/> England’s Anthony Harding and Jack Laugher with their gold medals won in the men’s synchronized 3m springboard final (Image: PA)
England’s Anthony Harding and Jack Laugher with their gold medals won in the men’s synchronized 3m springboard final (Image: PA)
Jack Laugher was looking to win gold for his late grandma and he delivered on the first opportunity at Birmingham 2022 on a night where First Dates star Fred’s daughter Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix was also victorious.
Laugher, 27, is from Harrogate but Bernice, his biggest supporter, lived in Sedgley, just a few miles from the Sandwell Aquatics Centre.
She died a few months ago, and Laugher was unable to attend her funeral because he risked catching Covid ahead of the World Cup – where he won three medals.
So he was keen to honor her memory in Birmingham, and he did just that, scoring a hat-trick of 1m springboard titles at the Commonwealth Games and winning his sixth gold overall.
He said: “It’s special that I hope I’ve made them proud today. She’s been my biggest supporter and I think I’ve hopefully taken care of her, my family, my mum by the pool, my girlfriend’s parents in the stands, I hope I’ve made them all proud.
“My grandma is always in my heart, but I think if you get too emotional and you bring the emotional side of things into this sport, which is a very fine motor sport and a high skill sport, it can mislead you, if it’s you do it for something I like to do it one dive at a time and try to concentrate. I know she would be proud of me. I’m proud I did it for her.
“There was a lot of pressure here trying to defend this title, which I’ve had for eight years now. It was a great performance, very stable, a few mistakes here and there but I’m really happy with everything and doing it in front of a home crowd makes it a little bit sweeter.”
Laugher was joined on the podium by compatriot Jordan Houlden, who led after the first two rounds and eventually won a memorable bronze medal.
Meanwhile, 17-year-old Spendolini-Sirieix kept her nerve in the women’s 10m ahead of father Fred to take gold, beating Laugher’s girlfriend Lois Toulson, who took silver.
She said: “It feels really good. Thanks for all the cheers, it means a lot to me. It’s amazing because my family couldn’t come to Tokyo but they came to Birmingham.”
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